Did Candy Crowley reshape the debate?
Focus group weighs in
- Duration 12:08
- Date Oct 17, 2012
Focus group weighs in
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This transcript is automatically generated
Today after the attack governor.
I stood in the Rose Garden.
And I told the American people in the world that we are gonna find out exactly what happened.
That this was an act of terror.
And I also said we're gonna hunt down those who committed this crime.
Governor if you -- yeah I that's what I look at it is I think it was I I I think it's Andersen the president just said something which which is that on the day after the attack he won the Rose Garden garden.
And said that this was an act of terror.
You said in the Rose Garden today after the attack it was an act of terror.
It was not a spontaneous demonstration is that what you -- saying please -- governor.
-- -- to make sure we get that for the record because it took the president fourteen days before he called the attack and -- -- an act of terror get the transfer.
It if he didn't fit in facts are so let me let me give it call an active here and a -- -- -- -- elected.
-- active terror it did as well.
Take it it is well take that two weeks or so for the whole idea of their being a -- out there about this tape but to come out -- -- this.
That the well that was a key moment in last night's presidential debate when moderator Candy Crowley interrupted governor Romney.
And according to -- went from -- moderator to active participant by actually defending the president and then trying to qualify her initial statement.
Crowley appeared on her colleague Anderson Cooper show afterward in an attempt to walk back some of what happened here she is defending herself.
-- we knew that the that the president had had said.
You know these acts and -- won't stand or whatever that -- the whole ball was.
And -- I think actually eat eat him because right after that I didn't turn around and say that you're totally correct but they spent two weeks telling us this was about a tape.
And that there was that you know this riot outside there have been does it console which there wasn't so he was right in the main if I just think he picked.
The wrong word.
Well this is becoming huge debate today with Crowley doing a series of appearances both on CNN and ABC's the view.
To essentially repeat the defense.
You just saw.
Joining me now to discuss it our focus group.
These are folks from all stripes independents Democrats and Republicans -- want to get your reaction.
To what we saw last night is that a fair charge that she went from independent moderator to somebody who put her thumb on the scale Kevin McCall and start with you.
Actually it's not just a fair charge I would station become -- participant she became an advocate.
And she was.
Principally wrong on the substance -- argument which made it all the worse because the rules had kept the moderator.
To a limited position for a reason for the American people to decide what the candidates were saying not to have an interpreted by a journalist who shouldn't be getting in the way.
Then beat me that you have power as a moderator as it as this straight news journalist.
Because people hopefully we'll look to you and think you are right this isn't a partisan this is somebody's gonna tell me the truth.
And so there's danger in being the fact checker on the spot did she did she.
Abuse that power.
I don't think she abused the power I think it.
Because if you see her in -- her interview subsequent to last night.
She did say -- you can see from the clip that she actually wanted to give Romney the benefit of the doubt really at the same time but Romney being.
What he was last night and it -- a bit of -- -- was also interrupting her in her ability to do that so she actually tried to be -- at that moment.
But it just didn't come out and I don't I I do not have a problem with with a moderator being an instant fact -- -- because quite frankly I think the voters need that.
It if they get it right.
But even she admitted after the fact that she did not get it right the Mitt Romney actually did make a valid point.
Well she said that last night but she also said that the president.
Was right as well and the president the president you -- and he was important guy.
Like I say I was it was up to debate tonight -- -- think she got right.
I don't think she got it right in other words should the president be the one defending himself and not anybody's.
And in this instance as we know what debates these are momentum moments Barack Obama was sitting in -- chair you could see it in the space he was asking the governor.
Go ahead please proceed.
-- he had him on the ropes and Candy Crowley was his lifeline but let's remember one thing.
What do Republicans want to talk about is the inconsistency.
Of this president.
Aren't they -- -- -- she's actually handed us a real opportunity as Republicans can out talk about this because if this was just a Romney.
Obama dynamic without her intervention.
It would not be viewed through this prism of media -- that -- Accelerates the -- it.
There's a there's a piece on the media I eight dot com which is -- -- -- website by Noa Rothman who says this is the reason that there is so much distrust in the fourth estate because.
So many is supposedly straight news journalist default to a democratic point of view in viewing a dispute.
When she said he did say what she sided with the president.
And then tried to offer a caveat.
A bit as your second point.
She stated it much better in herd defense defending herself and Anderson -- -- she did in the debate.
She did not actually articulate governor Romney's position.
It during the debate when this seventy million people were watching watch just watch.
What she actually said in -- debate and then what she claims she said watch.
It did as well take.
It's it is well take that two weeks or so for the whole idea there being a -- out there about this tape but to come out you're correct this that.
I didn't -- Robinson that you're totally correct but there's -- two weeks telling us this was about a tape.
And that there was -- -- you know of this riot outside would have been badly console which there wasn't.
-- -- It was clear she was the third debater here and I think the issue is that she was supposed to be.
A moderator if we want is somebody who was a surrogate or somebody who was a -- they should have clearly said.
This is her role but her role was to moderate and she didn't do that -- an effective way and I think that that's -- get people up in arms whether it's in this debate.
Whether it's the headline it's just been just present the -- the American people are Smart.
And they can figure it out but we need the information and not your purse back -- -- -- I couldn't disagree more I mean the facts are they Candy Crowley didn't great job pushing back against a bully and in that Romney.
And when she corrected him she went back -- -- you know you have a SharePoint two but the fact remains she didn't it.
For me I -- let me just isn't isn't -- -- I grant you that she tried she did try to.
Say OK but -- it took -- two weeks to call this.
A it terrorism act and all that while you were talking about about a protest if she did what she didn't say that she actually didn't put it let's talk about a larger point which is noted that I wanna say -- Minnesota.
-- -- amazing.
That in the face of a relatively poor performance by -- all we're talking about -- the moderator cannot count and that's our governor Paterson where to start with me and just.
Program this is what this round on Sunday yeah outspoken that they got a lot of other things in the show glad I thought it.
The really -- despicable because it was like she was acting like god because you you know -- what they can't argue with her -- the moderator.
And it's such an -- he has suddenly Obama which is typical and it's because he's politicize this whole thing.
Now he's UC's where -- an act of terror.
Which he meant at the time about -- in general because of nine elevenths otherwise he would not have left and gone to Las Vegas like an afternoon.
Challenge you on that they can't argue with her.
Why -- What is president one wants to be president.
They're Brit Hume made the point well -- why -- Mitt -- turned her her turn into Barack Obama and say OK you believed it was terror on September 12.
Why did you send -- UN ambassador on five Sunday shows right what 445 days after that.
Just say it was about a spontaneous do you why does Mitt Romney need to Candy Crowley to -- And that's my point is why everybody was -- -- -- Candy Crowley and mr.
Clinton I mean.
Obama we are talking about Candy Crowley can she did it changed everything we should have been talking about is -- -- now listen we shouldn't talk about they got in the fort down Americans this is a very important subject matter and look how we're talking about little acrylic has -- right.
She did change everything she gave -- a lot like.
Need to make a -- and -- -- talk.
I -- that's not a lot of talking about that's.
-- -- -- on this panel.
Are you upset because candy Candy Crowley way to end.
Are you upset because your guy didn't do let's not even want them.
-- again that's why I am -- let me get.
Idea you don't dinner and we all have to admit this Mitt Romney missed an opportunity to really nail on the bottom.
-- want to -- we've certainly -- that this.
Administration -- every major surrogate out there.
At some point was that attack that.
What was happening the enemy activity -- have a -- and then.
He got it.
But does he he he throws up when Obama said -- had an affair continued focus in on words that work technically spoke it has and they went down this -- Is that -- is a Harvard as gambler he should've known to check the transcript maybe he needs which fans transcript in his binders full of whatever and I think they know the bottom line here is that Ronnie Lott you know he got a bombing -- on the ropes and he was wrong on the facts and that is what the million.
Can't -- -- not used to being checked on facts and this was new for Romney -- somebody actually push back and I think Mitt is short for mythological.
Because if you think about the whole -- -- of -- his magical mystery map when it comes to his tax cuts.
And I -- yeah.
Let me ask you this let me do let me follow video that's the danger and I see it as the moderator of doing the on the spot fact check on an issue that's not the you know -- woman -- Is that you do it on one thing that through the lens that you -- back.
I would totally forgot I would totally agree I think that we wouldn't be great to have fact checkers on the spot another Ronnie campaigns that they won't be constrained by the fact checkers I -- -- -- -- -- what does that yeah that's kinda theater -- I think it should be all of my.
We regret the number of -- ever -- retract a number of occasions she stood before the debate that she was getting -- the rules and she was gonna -- I think.
The American people appreciate that she helped Romney and Barack Obama did that -- Barack Obama did a better job of forcing that around and tell the truth I think that's why Republicans.
Yeah it definitely does nothing to step back a little -- in essence is set hold up.
He he did say act of terror the day after the Libya murders he did he did -- lots and lots.
The context matters exactly and is there anybody -- panel that believes Barack Obama was declaring this a terrorist attack yeah.
-- that day.
Forty he can't he -- the ambassador out to say exactly -- and it was one -- you believe that that's the message then coming out of you and I think that I because at that point let -- this is president -- I certainly think that he was calling -- attacking Libya at terrorist attack.
Saying it was an act -- are terrorist attack the Maddux -- -- matters.
I'm asking you which message you think he was actually trying to send the week I murder he was talking about it being a terrorist attack and bringing the people who did it to just -- -- -- But if I'm not -- yeah.
Do and then the actions -- of ambassador rice are even more deplorable because if he admitted there was a terrorist -- and then pretended when he went on Univision Letterman the view.
And the united yeah.
It's time that's not a yeah he was -- -- he.
Question because there's a debate about what it is actually met.
What -- Candy -- come as the final judge of what it meant that I.
-- -- I know -- Don this is -- I got Democrats I thank you -- -- announcement being made here.